This was my second AIGA event at Zoo Atlanta, a place I now know to be THE ZOO in Atlanta. Perhaps I am wrong. Anyone reading this, please set me straight, otherwise. Like the Sagmeister event, I stopped at the Neighborhood Bar just north of Grant Park. It was, like before, the magnet for the hipsters with their brats. It’s annoying to be there since I’m like the lone wolf just trying to get a little buzz on and the young parents are eyeing me like I’m there to abduct their child. I mean, come on, it’s a BAR. I’m over this quickly, though I’m aware of the parents disquiet when one of their kids gets too close. I’m reading Wired magazine…I could see if it was Playboy or Hustler…
After a couple of beers, I headed over to the Zoo. This time there weren’t as many people. There wasn’t a cash bar or snacks. I was a bit disappointed. However, there were a lot of prints from Hatch there for sale for $10/per. A great opportunity for some cheap gifts. I bought several, took them back to my car and by the time I got back the show as about to start. Jim Sheridan is a congenial guy. I encountered him in the bathroom before the show and we chatted at the urinals. I would have shook his hand but both of us were otherwise occupied.
Sheridan’s presentation was mostly no-nonsense. Hatch Show Print is a business he took over after some soul searching of his own. What I found remarkable is that they do not cut new type. Every piece of work they do is compiled using the type that is on-hand. They only cut the illustrations when necessary. I like that. There is something about working with limitations that I enjoy and respect. Especially if you’re able to make something look fresh and new even though you’re using the same elements that maybe you used yesterday for an entirely different project. It tasks the designer to be creative with what amounts to stock elements.
Under Sheridan’s leadership, Hatch Show Print becomes more than a print shop. It’s become an American landmark, a place where the craft of printing is as valued as the design. I suppose there is room for such vanity and I like it because it’s so different from what I am used to doing on the computer.